Monday, February 2, 2009

Childhood development questionnaires suck

When Ada had her nine month checkup and shots, and I may have said this already so bear with me, the nurse gave me her 1 year checkup questionnaire so that I could have it completed before I came in for the appointment. That's great and I'm all about efficiency and I understand that they do it to make sure your child doesn't have any developmental delays, and more importantly that if he or she is delayed, they can help correct or diagnose problems early. That's all great. In the meantime, I'm doing this survey thinking "Man my kid is a late bloomer." There are five or six categories all judging different areas of development. Communication (She's a shoe-in. DD and I are socialites and it's in her jeans.) Dexterity. Coordination. Motor skills. Stuff like that.

"Does she help push her hands through the holes when you dress her?" Yes. 2 Points. Woo hoo.

"Does she put things in a box in succession?" No. Um, maybe. How many points does she get for maybe? One. Sure. That sounds fine.

"Does she scribble with a pen or pencil on paper if you show her how?" No. She tries to eat the pen and stab out her eye. Any points for that?

"Does she follow a command without hand gestures?" Not really.

"Does she say a word other than Ma ma or Da da or point to things she wants?" No. She just cries until I figure it out and then she's happy again for the next five minutes and repeat.

"Does she hop on one foot and rub her belly while taking shots of tequila?" Definitely not.

This thing is worse than taking the GMAT, ACT, SAT and LCAT all at once. My goodness!

In the end, it turns out that Ada didn't fall into any of the "concern areas" but she also isn't head of her class. She is however, off the charts for both height and weight so even if she can't lift her foot in anticipation of me putting her pants on, she can still squash your puny little runt of a kid like a grape under her amazonian foot. Take that!

Moral of the story: They aren't kidding when they say that every child figures things out at their own pace. For some kids, doing the tequila shot trick is a higher priority than others. For my kid, she's more into letting the other kids figure things out and then copying all of their tricks. I have to believe somewhere in her future that talent will be rewarded.

No comments: